Three in Concord, one in Antioch
By Scott Alonso, Public Information Officer, Office of the Contra Costa County District Attorney
Martinez, Calif. – Today, Tuesday, September 15, 2020 the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office is announcing three homicide cold cases, involving multiple defendants who are gang members affiliated with the Sureños, were filed recently. The gang violence was focused in South Concord and near Monument Boulevard. This successful effort was due to the years-long investigation and operation led by the FBI Safe Streets Task Force and local partners, including Concord Police, FBI, U.S. Attorney’s Office of Northern California, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms along with our Office. Two cases were filed last week, and one was filed yesterday, totaling four homicides involving 11 defendants. (See related article)
One of the homicides occurred in Antioch, and the victim was from Pittsburg, (See related article). The other three of the homicides occurred in Concord.
Operation Boulevard Blues culminated in a major law enforcement operation last Thursday that resulted in the arrest of 31 individuals and involved 31 different law enforcement agencies. Thirty-four search warrants were executed in multiple locations across Contra Costa County and 42 firearms were recovered. The details of the operation were announced earlier this morning with our federal partners.
“Our local efforts working collaboratively with our law enforcement partners, especially Concord Police, will keep our community safer and take violent gang members off the streets of Concord,” said District Attorney Diana Becton. “This successful operation started with a wiretap and led to multiple gang members involved in senseless murders and violence being arrested. While these cases were not solved right away, Concord Police and the FBI Safe Streets Task Force did not give up and fortunately we can bring some closure to the victims’ families.”
Overall, the DA’s Office filed three separate homicide complaints involving the following gang members of the Sureños – all of the alleged four homicides were done for the benefit of the gang:
- People v. Michael Valdez, Andrew Cervantes, Daniel Rodriguez, Docket Number 01-194377-8
o Victim is Marcos Villazon of Pittsburg, Date of Alleged Murder is November 21, 2015 in Antioch
o Victim is Luis Estrada, Date of Alleged Murder is November 30, 2015 in Concord
- People v. Rafael Lopez & Juan Barocio Jr., Docket Number 01-194379-4
o Victim is Victor Gutierrez, Date of Alleged Murder is April 17, 2014 in Concord
- People v. Jose Cisneros, Marcos Ochoa, Luis Cruz, Aurelia Mendez, Antonio Mendez, Jose Ochoa, Docket Number 01-194418-0
o Victim is Erick Cruz, Date of Alleged Murder is September 12, 2015 in Concord
The criminal investigations because of this operation are still active and ongoing. All of the defendants charged by the DA’s Office remain in custody.
Allen Payton contributed to this report.